Plea negotiations are under way for a former North Salt Lake man facing four first-degree felony sex abuse charges, his defense attorney told a 2nd District Court judge this week.

Vernal Wright, 41, formerly of 446 E. 950 North, is charged with two counts of sodomy upon a child, one count of rape of a child, and one count of attempted rape of a child.All are first-degree felonies, carrying prison terms of 5 years to life each, and the first three each additionally carry a 5-, 10- or 15-year minimum mandatory prison term.

Wright was arraigned this week before 2nd District Judge Rodney S. Page, who set a Dec. 7 trial date. Defense attorney Steve Vanderlinden told Page a plea bargain is being negotiated with the Davis County Attorney's Office and he doubts the case will go to trial.

Wright, who is living temporarily in Farmington, is charged in incidents involving 10- and 14-year old girls that occurred between February 1987 and July of this year in North Salt Lake, according to court records.